Campus launches Web strategy initiative

October 11, 2010

UM-Dearborn Block MAn initiative to develop the campus's first-ever comprehensive Web strategy project is now under way.

ISITE Design of Portland, Ore.--the external vendor chosen to execute the project--will access and review UM-Dearborn's website and related campus needs, evaluate all aspects of its research, conduct an independent and strategic review of the current website and provide its findings in a comprehensive report.

Representatives from ISITE are on campus this week to begin the first phase of the process--an assessment of the current UM-Dearborn website and related campus needs.

ISITE representatives have scheduled meetings this week to conduct website user surveys with faculty, staff and students, along with a cross section of external users, to evaluate the needs of a variety of users and serve as the foundation of the research phase of the project.
Also this month, ISITE will hold one-on-one meetings throughout the campus community in an effort to drill down into the internal workings of the university and the technical framework of the website.

Next steps in the process will include the creation of multiple campus focus groups to gather additional information from a broader campus perspective on the current site and, more importantly, what faculty, staff and students need in the future.

The entire process is expected to take 90 days. Preliminary recommendations will be shared with a committee made up of faculty and staff for feedback in preparation for the final report, which will be delivered to the university in January 2011.

"We know that our website is central to meeting the many academic, communications, recruitment, marketing and operational goals of the university," Chancellor Daniel Little said in an e-mail to faculty and staff. "Increasingly, the 'industry standard' for maximizing the value of an organization's Web presence across complex and diverse functions is to develop a Web strategy--ideally one that includes both substantive internal analysis and high-level external expertise."

The campus's Web Core Leadership Team:

  • Tom Baird, vice chancellor for Institutional Advancement
  • Don Bord, associate provost, Academic Affairs
  • Stan Henderson, vice chancellor for Enrollment Management and Student Life
  • Violetta Ogilvy, chief technology officer and director of Information Technology Services
  • Cathy Staples, director of marketing, Institutional Advancement

UM-Dearborn's Web Strategy Team:

  • Stein Brunvand, assistant professor, School of Education
  • Cathy Staples, director of marketing, Institutional Advancement
  • Theresa Cordon, Web content manager, Institutional Advancement
  • Julia Daniel, associate librarian
  • Rachel Forringer, former Web project manager, Institutional Advancement
  • Noel Hornbacher, assistant controller, Financial, Budget and General Services
  • Ron Labao, former Web applications developer, Information Technology
  • Deb Peffer, interim director of admissions
  • Lee Redding, associate dean of academic affairs, College of Business
  • Jonathan Smith, professor of English, College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters
  • Christopher Tremblay, executive director of enrollment management and interim director of Financial Aid
  • Louis Tsui, associate professor, Computer and Information Science